Last Updated on December 10, 2019
So you’re considering dental implants, but you’re not sure WHO should be performing the procedure. Any dental implant specialist or dentist is fine, right?
The truth is this… not all dentists are fully prepared to give you the best results possible for your dental implants. Do your chompers a favor by making an informed dental decision.
It’s best to look for a dental implant specialist, not just a general dentist. These include oral and maxillofacial surgeons, prosthodontists, and periodontists. But what makes these individuals so “special”?
Well… they are certified by the American Dental Association. And this means they attended extra courses after dental school. The ADA recognizes these individuals as professionals who can properly perform a dental implant procedure.
But what do these ADA-certified specialists study after dental school?
Oral and maxillofacial surgeons take a year of training for anesthesia. And on top of that, they spend 4 more years in school to work on their specialties.
Periodontists and prosthodontists extend their surgical training for 3 years after dental school.
These dental specialists are your best options.
Why Choose a Dental Implant Specialist Over a General Dentist?
Getting dental implants requires undergoing a specialized surgical procedure. You’ll want this procedure to be performed by someone who has extensive training in the field. Although a general dentist (with proper certification) may be able to place dental implants, this doesn’t mean that he/she will give you the best experience possible. And you shouldn’t “settle for less” with your teeth.
Decreased Risk of Complications
This is arguably the best reason for choosing a specialist. Want to avoid complications to the highest extent? Then you’ll want to avoid the general dentist who only has a certification. The general dentist may offer a better price for your procedure. But with the cheaper option comes a higher chance of complications.
Getting dental implants is a big life decision. And you’ll want the most advanced equipment and dental technology to be used during your procedure. Specialists will have this type of technology and equipment. And that’s on top of their additional training in the field. Your artificial tooth/teeth and the surrounding gums will have better visuals under these circumstances.
Gum Disease Management
The specialists, mentioned above, undergo training on the treatment of gum disease. It’s a disease that can affect anyone, and you’ll want a dentist who really knows the ins-and-outs. Whether it’s a maxillofacial surgeon, prosthodontist, or periodontist, he/she will be fully equipped to treat gum diseases and infections if they exist.
Choosing the Best Dental Implant Specialist
Are you feeling overwhelmed in trying to choose the best dental specialist for your needs? Don’t worry, because you can keep reading on for tips to help you make an informed decision.
What to Look for
This is going to be the most important thing in making your decision. You absolutely want to find a specialist who is certified by the American Dental Association. This is going to guarantee that your dental implants are performed by someone who has undergone extensive training in the field.
Questions for an Informed Decision
Want to be sure that you’re making the right decision for your dental implants? You’ll need to have the answers to a wide range of questions. Knowledge is power, so here are some questions to ask of yourself, the professional, and the office/staff members.
The specialist will be the person changing your life, one tooth at a time. It’s important to know as much as you can about this person. Here are some valuable questions to ask:
- Does the specialist continue his/her education?
- Can the specialist accommodate for 24-hour assistance?
- Is the specialist well-trained? What school was attended?
- Is the specialist good at explaining treatments and procedures?
You’ll want to know all aspects of the office you’re attending. It’s important to not only know about the specialist but also how his/her office operates. Below are some good questions:
- Is the office well-maintained?
- Will there be any trouble getting to the office?
- Can you fit the office hours somewhere in your schedule?
- Does the office include your health plan? What are the costs?
This experience isn’t only about asking questions to others, but about asking yourself some important questions as well. Below are some things you should think about in general:
- How long are the waiting times?
- Are any emergency services offered?
- Is dental equipment high-quality and up-to-date?
- Will the staff be open to helping you answer these questions?
Costs of an Experienced Dental Implant Specialist
This is going to depend on different factors. But according to the New York Times, you can expect 1 dental implant to be somewhere in the range of $3,000-$4,500. Of course, you’ll need to multiply this price by however many teeth you need to be replaced.
Are you getting any preoperative procedures? X-rays would be in the range of $25-$200 while bone grafts would be $250-$3,000. Be sure to include these types of procedures when you are determining the overall cost of your dental visits.
These prices really do add up. But this is because all stages of the procedure may require multiple visits to the specialist. Insurance may not cover everything. It may not cover any of it.
Looking to save up to 60% on your dental procedures? There’s an option that could offer just that. You may want to check out a dental savings plan. They start out at just $97 per year.
You may want to check out “dental tourism” as well. This has become a popular option for many people looking to save some money while still getting quality dental implants. It involves traveling to another country, such as Mexico or Ecuador, to receive your dental implants. However, just like any other specialist, you’ll want to look up the credentials of your foreign expert. The more knowledge you have, the better off you will be in your journey towards getting your new tooth/teeth.
Finding a Dental Implant Specialist Near You
What if you’re not interested in traveling to another country? How can you find a certified specialist in your area who will get the job done efficiently and affordably? These tips should help you find a great specialist in your region.
You’ll be able to trust your friends’ words on their experiences with specialists in the area. This can be a great option for finding a professional near you. It’s recommended that you ask your friends some of the questions above. A reliable source is the best source. You can expect honest opinions and facts from your friends.
Meet with the Specialists
You don’t have to just jump the gun and schedule an appointment. You can go straight to the source and ask questions first. Check out some of the dentists who are near you. Visit them and their staff face-to-face and ask as many questions as possible. Be sure to keep your eyes open to office maintenance and equipment. Is the office space kept neat and orderly? How helpful are the staff members? The attitude of employees and the condition of the office can say a lot about how your future experience will be. Make sure to get answers to all of the important questions.
Read Plenty of Reviews
What if you don’t have any friends who have had dental implant surgery? This is no problem… just read online reviews. It’s recommended that you read as many reviews as you can before making your decision. Be sure to have a firm grasp on what the specialist and his office is like.
Looking for a helpful place to read reviews of dental implants and the specialists who placed them? Be sure to check out RealSelf.com. There, you’ll find both good and bad reviews. Past customers share their post-operative experiences received from the specialist and staff.
What if you’re looking for information from the dentist as well? On RealSelf.com, you’ll be able to find the dental implant specialists responding to past customers. This site really can help you make an informed decision before receiving dental implant surgery.
If you’re planning to get dental implants, it’s best to choose a specialist instead of a general dentist. Specialists are ADA-certified professionals such as oral and maxillofacial surgeons, periodontists, and prosthodontists.
There are many cases where a general dentist will be certified to place dental implants. But this doesn’t mean that he/she is your best option. This certification is nowhere close to the amount of training received by a specialist.
Your new implants will be a life-changer. This means that you’ll want THE BEST specialist to be performing your implant surgery. A specialist will have extensive, specialized training for properly taking care of your mouth throughout the experience.
You need to ask yourself, and others, many questions before you make your final decision. Knowledge is power here. It’s a good idea to be patient in your journey to a new-and-improved mouth.
You should be able to smile, knowing you made the correct choice.